Apple replacing MacBook Pro batteries for free after reports of swelling

If you own a MacBook Pro laptop, you should know that Apple has announced a battery replacement program for some of the 13-inch versions.

The replacement is being offered due to an issue wherein the battery in these laptops may physically expand. The company has said the problem poses no immediate safety issue, but is encouraging customers to see if their device is affected and whether they are eligible for a replacement battery.

macbook pro 13 inch photo
Getty Images | Kevork Djansezian

Is Your Laptop Eligible?

The affected laptops were manufactured between October 2016 and October 2017. The recall does not affect 13-inch MacBook Pros with a touch bar or older 13-inch MacBook Pro models. If you think you have a laptop affected by this issue and you have already paid to replace the battery, you can contact Apple about a refund.

You can find out if you are eligible for a new battery by entering your laptop’s serial number on Apple’s website. The replacement will be offered free of charge and customers have three ways in which to get their laptop serviced:

Apple asks that customers backup their data before having their laptops serviced. The total service time will take 3 to 5 days.

macbook pro photo
Flickr | @felixtriller

“Normally, a battery is charged and discharged to specific voltage limits, which is controlled by an electronic management system in the battery pack,”  K.M. Abraham, an expert in this subject and a professor at Northeastern University, explained to Consumer Reports regarding what’s causing the batteries to swell. “If there’s a failure, now it is not controlling the voltage and then the battery can over-discharge and over-charge, producing gas.”

The announcement comes in the wake of an issue last year in which older iPhones were intentionally slowed down by Apple with the alleged intention of preserving battery life. In response, the company temporarily lowered the price of replacement batteries from $79 to $29.

Have you noticed any issues with your MacBook’s battery?